On Tuesday May 24th, four (4) Winners from the Sugar Mas 44 Competitions were jointly given over EC$50,000.00 in financial assistance toward their participation in regional Shows to be held in the upcoming months. The Handing-over ceremony was hosted at the Department of Culture on Victoria Road, Basseterre. To be specific as to where they will be competing, on July Friday 1st, Ms. Orngel Erskine (originally sponsored by Music Festival 20), travels to St. Vincent to represent us in the Ms. Carival, and once more, on July 24th, to Antigua, for the Ms. Jaycees Pageant. On July 22nd and 23rd, the inaugural Ms. National Carnival Swimwear, Ms. Alsanarda Hanley, (originally sponsored by the St. Kitts – Nevis Development Bank), will be entering the Ms. Venus Model Pageant in Anguilla, while Ms. Kyla Browne (originally sponsored by FLOW), will be entering the Ms. Caribbean Culture Pageant in Nevis on July 30th and August 1st. The reigning National Calypso Monarch, King Astro, will also be vying for the Crown at the Leeward Islands Calypso Monarch competition, in Anguilla, on August 6th.
As it relates to their financial support, worthy of note is the fact that the St. Kitts – Nevis National Carnival Committee has been informed that it is the first time in our history of Carnival where the King has been given equitable financial support from the National Carnival Committee to participate in a regional competition. When asked about this, Carnival Chairman, Noah G. Mills, noted that perhaps the long-reverberating echoes of the late Calypso Reggie finally landed on listening ears. In his song entitled “Killing de Culture,” Reggie lamented on the lavishing treatment, gifts, and prizes that Pageant Contestants and Queens receive while Calypsonians have to be satisfied with the “sticky end of the stick.”
In giving brief remarks, Mr. Stanley Knight, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Culture, lauded the Ambassadors and underscored the importance of their role as such. He urged all four Representatives to go out and perform to the best of their abilities to make themselves, friends, families, the National Carnival Committee, the Ministry of Culture, Government, as well as, the entire Federation, proud.
Mr. Troy Mills, Director of Culture, also gave comments and noted that the Department felt heartened to be associated with the Ambassadors, a journey that started from the 2015 -16 National Carnival right up to his point. He also recorded the department’s commitment toward assisting in all ways possible to ensure the further augmentation of the Carnival Product.
Mr. Noah Mills also resonated the confidence being placed in the 4-member contingent, and reminded the Delegates that expectations are high. That is, he emphasized, “We are expecting to see 5 crowns coming back home.”
After receiving their cheques, all Ambassadors expressed their profound appreciation for the assistance given and explained that it would go a long way in preparing for their respective competitions.